Sunday, April 17, 2016

Friday, April 15, 2016

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Saturday, April 9, 2016

Spring Cleaning: Pantry Edition

We all know the rut you can get into in the winter: not exercising and eating too much junk has you feeling sluggish, but you're too cold and lazy to change it up. Once the weather warms up, feeling gross and staying inside all day is no longer fun- with so much you can do outdoors again, it's time to break the cycle and start fresh. Getting back into a routine can be tough, though, especially when we feel like we don't have time to make healthy meals. Here's a few staple items that you can combine to make delicious, healthy meals with very little time (and on a budget).

1. Frozen brown rice
Either buy it pre-made and frozen or make a big batch yourself and divide it up into containers. Combine with whatever veggies you have in the fridge and an egg and you've got a well-rounded meal. If you want to get a little fancier, you can serve it with kimchi, vegetables, a lean meat and egg for a lightened-up bibimbap, or mix in some rice vinegar and turn it into sushi.

2. Pre-sliced raw veggies
Vegetables like cucumbers, bell peppers, carrots,  and broccoli all have awesome health benefits and are delicious raw. Serve with hummus, tzatziki or tahini if you like dressing, or just top with a drizzle of lemon juice and a sprinkle of red pepper flakes. These are an easy snack to take on the go but are also great for munching. Boredom eaters, this one's for you- a great, light alternative for other mindless snacking choices.

3. Zucchini
One of the great things about zucchini is that it's really versatile- you can roast it or sauté it and toss it into any dish, or you can get creative with the spiralizer and serve it as a more nutrient-dense pasta alternative (with fewer calories). Top with some roasted baby tomatoes and garlic for a light pasta dish or with marinara and turkey meatballs for a more traditional feel.

4. Sweet Potatoes
Sweet potatoes are basically the king of the powerhouse foods- they're cheap, they're yummy, they're good for you and you can microwave them in about 5-10 minutes.

5. Eggs
Eggs are generally a household staple and are another remarkably versatile food. Use them as a binding ingredient to whip up some quick lentil burgers, hard boil them and chop them up into a salad, fry one in a little olive oil and add it to your sandwich, whisk a bunch into a little frittata, bake them in a shakshuka- the possibilities are endless.

6. Canned beans
While it's better to cook your own beans, canned beans still have lots of health benefits while being very convenient. Try to buy organic and be sure to rinse and drain them before use, but these can be tossed into nearly any dish for some extra protein or can take the stage with recipes like these black bean and brown rice cakes.

7. Snacks for when the mood strikes
At the end of the day, you have to realize that you're not always going to want to eat a bowl of kale for dinner and call it a day. Keeping some healthier snacking alternatives is a great way to keep the cravings at bay without completely getting off track. I love eating 1/2 of a Lenny and Larry's Cookie, which is non-GMO and vegan while packing 16 grams of protein. Other options? Lentil chips, Justin's dark chocolate peanut butter cups, or homemade treats like our healthy cookie dough truffles or some black bean brownies.

Enjoy!
xoxo,
Yasi "I've got vegetables literally falling out of my mini-fridge"







Thursday, April 7, 2016

Friday, April 1, 2016

Hello again, P&J

If you guys haven't noticed, we've been a little off the grid lately. Why? Well, we're second semester juniors in college which means we're balancing internship applications and general life planning with all the day-to-day of school. I (Yasi) have been spending basically all my time working, trying to balance 19.5 hours of accounting and finance classes with a part time job, multiple executive board positions, and a research assistant position so as you can imagine, we've been pretty busy. Unfortunately, P&J has sort of been put on hold while we get our lives together, buuuuut....

We're excited to be re-launching! You can expect to get regular diy, style, travel, food and general lifestyle content.

As a celebration, we're offering a promo to the reader that brings in the most new subscribers! To enter, make sure you're 1) subscribed to our email list and 2) following us on at least one form of social media. Share our links with friends and family and shoot us a message with the email addresses of everyone you referred. We've got P&J goodies like computer stickers, tote bags, mugs and more for our top referrers.

We're so excited and can't wait to share the new Pacific & June with you all. Happy sharing!

xoxo,
Yasi & Lexi

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Healthy Cookie Dough

Do you every have one of those days where you just want to eat an entire tube of Toll House cookie dough (even though you hear your mom reminding you of the salmonella risk in the back of your head)? My semi-grown up mind tells me not to do this because I will instantly regret it, but that still doesn't curb my cookie dough cravings. After scouring the internet and adjusting a number of recipes to my taste, I finally came up with this delicious recipe for healthy, vegan, gluten free cookie dough! You can eat it straight out of the bowl, or try rolling it into truffles and drizzling with chocolate for an extra-decadent treat.

Seriously, is there anything better than a big spoonful of cookie dough??


Healthy Cookie Dough

TOTAL TIME: 1 hr 15 MIN makes: 2 dozen truffles

ingredients:
2 cans organic chickpeas, rinsed and patted dry
1/2 c nut butter (I used 1/4 almond and 1/4 peanut)
1/4 t sea salt
1/2 c dark chocolate chips (regular or vegan, depending on your need)
1/2 c loosely packed brown sugar (or a scant 1/4 c maple syrup)
1 T vanilla extract
1/4 t baking soda
1/4 c rolled oats (gluten-free if you need it)

preparation:
Pulse the chickpeas and oats in a food processor until combined and broken up into small pieces. Add  the rest of the ingredients (except the chocolate chips) and blend until it comes together into a dough-like consistency, stopping to scrape the bowl a few times. Remove the dough from the processing bowl and stir in chocolate chips. If you're just going to eat it from the bowl, cover and pop in the fridge for about an hour until chilled. Otherwise, roll heaping tablespoons into balls and melt another 1/2 c chocolate chips in the microwave. Using a fork, drizzle chocolate over the tops of the truffles and refrigerate until set, about 45 minutes. Enjoy!

xoxo,
Yasi "Could actually survive on these though"

Thursday, February 11, 2016

7 Ways to Spend Galentine's Day (because Valentine's Day is so overrated)

We all know what February 14th means- last minute flower purchases, gifts of cheesy teddy bears and fully booked Italian restaurants for the next 50 miles. This year, V-Day happens to be on a Sunday, which only means one thing if you're a college student: H&R Day (homework & recovery #rage). Instead of going out when you really need to finish that entire paper you've been putting off or spending Valentine's on an awkward date, celebrate Galentine's Day on February 13th with your best friends! If you need a little inspiration, here are some fun things you can do together:

photo courtesy of marthastewart.com


1. Take each other out on a date.
This year, we're headed to a cute new Italian place for dinner and then going to see How to be Single and I can guarantee it'll be way more fun than dancing in a frat basement where there are pledges dressed like baby cupid. Plus, let's be real, your friends are way better at planning dates than boys so this will be more fun.

2. Hold a 'Secret Cupid' gift exchange.
Whether you all exchange weird stuff you found on etsy that has to do with an inside joke or you get your bestie that Alex + Ani bracelet she's been eyeing, everyone's guaranteed to have fun with this.

3. Stay in and have a pamper evening.
Make a Sephora run and pick up face masks, nail polish, and whatever you need to have a DIY spa night (this mask is a personal favorite of ours).

4. Make some old-school valentines.
Dig out an old shoe box, cut a hole in the top, break out the construction paper and make your friends valentines! Your Kindergarten teacher had it right- coloring is the best.

5. Have a dessert party.
Just because you're not on a date doesn't mean you shouldn't be getting chocolate. After all, if this holiday isn't about putting yourself into a sugar coma that what is it about? Try a personal favorite, this classic icebox cake, or get creative with freezer fudge, popsicles, and mug cakes (or bake in a real oven if you're feeling fancy).

6. Share the love with your community.
If you're feeling the warm and fuzzies, try volunteering in the community! Read stories to kids in the hospital, decorate cookies with people living in a local homeless shelter, or cuddle up to some pups at the humane society.

7. Plan a day trip.
Chances are, there's some great hiking spot, cool museum, or cute town near you that you keep meaning to visit. Take a day off with your friends to get out and explore, try new restaurants, stop in cute boutiques, roam around art galleries and see something new!

Hope your Galentine's Day is as great as ours will be!
xoxo,
Yasi "Just need to get through an exam and a project first"

Saturday, January 30, 2016

4 Things You Should Do Before Your 21st

Most of us look forward to our 21st birthdays as the point in our lives in which we are finally given all the privileges of adulthood but still have a little more time before people expect us to totally have our sh*t together. I'm thoroughly enjoying my time before ~real adulthood~ sets in, but I don't think that means we should all be total hot messes. Here's a few things you should do before you turn 21:

1. Know something about current events.
As millennials, we're much more connected to the rest of the world than any previous generations and you really shouldn't put that to waste. I'm not saying you have to read the New York Times and Wall Street Journal every day, but start following some news outlets on Twitter, listen to the occasional NPR podcast, subscribe to daily email blasts like The Skimm or Morning Brew, read headlines or do something so you at least kind of know what's happening outside the walls of your dorm.

2. Start building a credit score.
I get it, college is rough and there will probably come a point when your textbooks will cost $800 (looking at you, accounting department) and you still have to buy a special finance calculator, an interview suit, and stuff so you can maintain some level of personal hygiene. It's going to suck and you won't enjoy having no money, but here's the deal- getting into debt now is a really bad idea. Accept a good offer from a credit card and only use it for purchases you can pay off every month. By the time you're ready to do something like buy a car or a house, you'll actually be able to qualify for a loan.

3. Learn to budget.
Building off the credit card idea- take a class in personal finance and set an actual budget for yourself. I know it's hard to set aside a large chunk of your income every month, but set up your online banking so as much as you can possibly afford to put aside goes directly into your savings account each month. There are some great apps that make budgeting easier (I recommend Mint), but an old fashioned notebook also works. Start now so you're more financially stable going into adulthood.

4. Have a few go-to grown up outfits.
You're going to need a nice interview outfit, a cocktail party outfit, and a date night/night out with friends outfit. This doesn't mean you have to go out and drop $10,000 at Barney's, but it also means you should shop around and start calling that blazer you threw over a body-con dress from a fraternity formal last year "business attire". Make sure you keep everything nicely tailored, lint-free, wrinkle-free and smelling good so you're always ready to go, regardless of the occasion. There are lots of stores geared toward millennials that have great sales on a regular basis where you can get nice outfits cheap, so consider subscribing to their email lists to help make the search a little easier.








Thursday, January 28, 2016

48 Hours in Amsterdam



Saturday:

10:00 am // Grab breakfast at a pancake house. They are spread throughout the city (Click here for a Top 5 List). Be weary of picking one in a super-touristy area as they are often overpriced. Dutch pancakes are delicious, and poffertjes (mini Dutch pancakes) are probably the best thing on this planet.


11:00 am // Rent a bike. It’s the easiest way to get around the city, but be careful, Dutch people on bikes are aggressive and were raised on bikes from birth.  


12:00 pm // On a nice day, venture to Vondelpark, ride around, and enjoy the beautiful scenery. On a not-so-nice day, head to a museum. Amsterdam has a great museum district that includes the Rijksmuseum, the Van Gogh Museum, and The Stedelijk Museum. Museumplein, the park in between all of the museums, is a beautiful place to sit, relax, and take in the beauty of Amsterdam (+ This is where the famous Iamsterdam sign is)
3:00 pm // Head to de Pijp neighborhood and explore the Albert Cuyp Markt. Get a fresh, warm stroopwaffel (or if you’re feeling like something savory, try Kapsalon) and shop around. There are great vintage shops in the neighborhood, including Marbles Vintage. + If you are a beer person, The Heineken Brewery is right there. Take a factory tour.


5:00 pm // Take an evening canal cruise. The canals while the sun is setting are even more beautiful. If it is a warm day, book a cruise on an open air boat so you really get a full experience.


7:00 pm // Dinner at manamana in De Pijp


9:00 pm // Head over to Leidseplein for some drinks. If you’re into the clubbing scene, check out Melkweg or Paradiso for some good music and dancing.

Sunday:

11:00 am // Head to brunch at Bakers & Roasters. Best. Brunch. Ever.


12:30 pm // Head to Dam Square to see the Royal Palace and do some shopping.


2:00 pm // Go to the Anne Frank House. Buy tickets way in advance, or prepare to wait in line. Enjoy the beauty of Prinsengracht. Or, catch up on museum visits that you couldn’t fit in on Saturday!


3:30 pm // Explore the Jordaan neighborhood (the neighborhood that surrounds the Anne Frank House). Go to the Nine Streets (Negen Straatjes) where the cutest boutiques (The Darling!) and vintage stores exist. Grab some coffee and enjoy the ambience.

6:00 pm // Drink and eat dinner at Foodhallen, a literal food hall that has every type of food you could ever imagine. Everything is delicious, from the steak sandwich, the fresh pasta, and the sushi hand rolls, to the vietnamese spring rolls and butcher burgers. There is also a bar just for Gin & Tonics.

8:00 pm // Head for drinks at Cafe Belgique, serving only Belgium Beer and mostly from the tap

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Almond Milk Chai Latte

If you haven't noticed, we've sort of been on an unintentional hiatus. After a whirlwind semester abroad, finals, travel and the holidays with family, we've been so busy that it's been hard to blog. One of my new years' resolutions was to blog more. With that said, I thought I'd share this absolutely ah-mazing almond milk chai latte recipe.

Admittedly, this isn't the amazingly milky, sweet masala chai you'll find in Indian restaurants (or in India if you're lucky enough to have tried it there), but sadly dairy and my stomach don't get along so well and eating healthier is also one of my goals for the new year. Without further ado, here's the recipe. Bon appetit!



ALMOND MILK CHAI LATTE

TOTAL TIME: 15 MIN SERVES: 1 LARGE OR 2 SMALL LATTES

ingredients:
1 c. almond milk (I like Califia Farms Vanilla)
2 chai tea bags
2 t. honey
1 cinnamon stick (optional)
1/4 t. ground ginger (optional)
1/4 t. cardamom (optional)

preparation:
Boil about 1 c. water and steep tea bags until very strong, 8-10 minutes. While tea is steeping, combine your almond milk, honey and spices (if using) in a small saucepan. Whisk milk mixture until hot and frothy- if you have a milk frother, you can use that at this point. Remove tea bags and pour milk over chai, spooning foam onto the top. Enjoy!

xoxo,
Yasi "On my second of the day (whoops?)"





Tuesday, January 5, 2016

P&J's Guide to New Years' Resolutions

Ah, New Year's resolutions- or as I like to call them "2-week-long-diets". There's something about the time-honored tradition of creating unreasonable goals and then quickly giving up on them that keeps us writing lists and posting "new year, new me" Facebook statuses every time the holiday rolls around. Here at Pacific & June, we've got a few tips to creating (and sticking) with your resolutions this year.

1. Be realistic.
I think this is probably the most important one. So often people tell themselves that they want to lost 10 pounds a month, run a marathon, solve world hunger and create the next Snapchat. Guess what? The less realistic your goals are, the more likely you are to fail and give up entirely. Instead, focus on one thing at a time, like "this month I'm going to cut back my sugar intake to once a week".

2. Make sure you have a support system in place.
If you want to eat healthier, tell your friends and explain to them why it's important to you! Chances are they'll be supportive and be conscious of that when you're all going out to brunch or even staying in for a night. You'll also have people holding you accountable, which is more likely to keep you on track.

3. Stop thinking of New Year's as the only time you can make a change.
Instead of failing and waiting until next year to set goals again, think of your New Year's resolutions as a starting point on the path to your goals and add throughout the year. Say your goal is to go back to grad school- make your focus for January gathering up as much information on the application process as you can, then in February start creating a timeline and study plan for entrance exams, etc. Breaking your overall goals into smaller, more manageable parts will make them feel less overwhelming.

4. Stop being so hard on yourself!!!
I can't stress this one enough! It's ok if you fall off the wagon. It's ok if you swore to cut out sugar and had a slice of cake at your friend's birthday party, or if you swore you'd get your GPA up and got a C on an exam. I get that in this age of social media where everyone carefully curates their public image that it's easy to compare yourself to others and convince yourself that everyone is working out everyday, hanging out with their friends, eating perfect healthy meals and maintaining flawless grades or careers but in reality, no one's life is perfect. Just because you aren't seeing other people's problems on Instagram doesn't mean they aren't there, so I mean it when I say GIVE YOURSELF A BREAK. You don't have to justify your slice of cake with an extra 30 minutes on the treadmill or that C with the fact that you had a million other tests that week. In the wise words of Hannah Montana, "nobody's perfect", so just relax and move on.

In short, it's awesome to have goals but you shouldn't beat yourself up over them. The only thing that matters is whether you are happy and whether you are meeting goals that are important to you. So go forth and start working on those resolutions (even if that resolution is to keep on killing the game). Happy New Year, darlings!

xoxo,
Yasi




Monday, January 4, 2016

48 Hours in Brussels

I'll be honest, Brussels is one of those places that kind of went under my radar until recently. It's not one of those places that's a huge destination, especially if you've already got a long flight just to get to  the continent of Europe. When I went just before Christmas, I was pleasantly surprised- it's a gorgeous city with incredible food and lots to keep you occupied. 




Saturday
10:00 am // Stop in Maison Dandoy for breakfast. Opt for something savory to prepare for the mass chocolate consumption, but don't miss the traditional Liege waffle, sans toppings. Pick up a few tins of their famous chocolate dipped speculoos cookies- your friends will thank you. 

11:30 am // Head out along the chocolate trail- be sure to visit Elizabeth, Frederic Blondeel, Mary and Alex & Alex (my personal favorites). 
#protip: Try to avoid the giant chocolate shops like Neuhaus that produce in mass quantities- go for the artisan shops. 

1:30 pm // Visit the quirky comic strip museum- Brussels has the highest number of comic strip artists per capita and is the birthplace of Tintin. 

3:30 pm // Grab a late (and healthy) lunch at the original Le Pain Quotidien.

5:00 pm // Visit the Grand-Place as the sun sets. The view is spectacular at any time of day, but you'll be glad you saw it during the day and at night.

7:00 pm // Book a table at Michelin-starred Alexandre or La Truffle Noire for a splurge-worthy meal.  

Sunday
10:00 am // Head to Les Filles for a leisurely brunch to fuel up for the day.

12:30 pm // Walk through Heysel Park and visit Mini-Europe and the Atomium, built for the 1958 Worlds' Fair. 

3:00 pm // Tour Parlamentarium, the tourist center and museum for the EU. 

5:00 pm // Do some more sightseeing in the city center and stop for a waffle break at Le Funamble Waffles, located right next to Mannekin Pis.

6:00 pm // Enjoy some authentic Belgian frites- Maison Antoine is a favorite- and be to try the samourai sauce.

7:30 pm // Take in the sights on the way to Delirium, which holds the world record for having the largest number of beers on tap. Don't worry if you're a newbie- the bartenders can help you out.

Happy traveling!
xoxo,
Yasi "Currently drooling over that waffle pic"